When it comes to 2016 Olympic success, Arab countries are counting on athletics, as the region's track and field athletes are arguably the most accomplished.
Two out of four Qatari Olympic medals were won by track and field athletes and Bahrain’s only Olympic medal was for Meryam Jamal’s 1,500 meter race silver. Meanwhile, Morocco’s Olympic tally contains 22 medals, of which 19 were earned in track and field athletics.
At Poland’s IAAF Under-20 World Championship, which took place from July 19 to July 24, Arab athletes reasserted that they are poised for glory at the Rio 2016 Olympics. Qatar's athletes won two gold medals and a bronze. Bahrain's athletes brought home a gold, two silvers and a bronze, while Morocco earned a single bronze.
Egypt, Algeria and Iraq were represented at the championship as well, but their athletes did not succeed in reaching the podium.
Here are the eight Arab Athletics U-20 World Championship medalists.
1. Abdalelah Haroun, Qatar
The 400 meter champion was the only runner to break the 44-second barrier in Poland. After timing 46.51 seconds in the first round and placing fifth, he cut his time to 45.55 in the quarter-finals and ranked fourth, yet he finished first in his heat in both rounds.
Haroun stepped it up in the final, finishing with 44.81, which is the second fastest U-20 timing in 2016 and 0.15 seconds slower than the championship record held by Saudi Arabia’s Hamdan Odha Al-Bishi. Last year, Haroun registered the third fastest run of all time in the 400 meter U-20 history.
He has given an excellent performance this season ahead of his first-ever Olympics next month, as he has claimed his first World Championship gold, following his IAAF World Indoor Championship silver in March.
2. Mohamed Moaaz, Qatar
With a personal best of 63.63 meters for the dicus throw, Moaaz won another Qatari gold and currently ranks second place in the U - 20 world leading chart for 2016. He had dominated the qualification round, achieving 62.79 meters.
3. Mohamed Hamdi, Qatar
Hamdi seized the bronze at the high jump event with a personal best 2.23 meter jump. Hamdi and Moaaz have fallen short on qualifying to the Rio Olympics.
4. Edidiong Odiong, Bahrain
The Nigerian native won gold at the 200 meter race. With a 22.84 second finish in the final, she was the only female in the championship to hit the 22-second mark in the 200 meter. She had dominated the first round and the semifinal, respectively timing 23.06 and 23.19. Odiong is poised to take part in the Rio 2016 Olympics.
She finally won the gold after ranking fifth at the 2013 IAAF World Youth Championship and sixth at the 2014 IAAF World Junior Championship.
5. Dalila Abdulkadir Gosa, Bahrain
Gosa clocked 8:46.42 minutes in the 3,000 meter final, grabbed her second World Youth Championship silver and registered this year's second fastest U-20 timing. She additionally ranked seventh in the 5,000 meter race. Gosa has booked her spot at the 5,000 meter race at her first Olympic Games in Rio, but she has already competed and won bronze at the Youth Olympics.
6. Bontu Rebitu, Bahrain
Rebitu's 15:31.93 finish earned the Youth Championship bronze in the women's 5,000 meter race. Last month, she ran a personal best (15:25.12 minutes), which is 1.12 seconds slower than the qualifying minimum for Rio 2016.
7. Tigist Getnet, Bahrain
The Ethiopian-born athlete claimed the 3,000 meter steeplechase silver, finishing in 9:34.08 minutes in the final after topping the qualifying round. Getnet has qualified for both the 1,500 meter race and 3,000 steeplechase at the 2016 Olympics. She is the world's second best 3,000 meter steeplechase female athlete in 2016.
8. Mostafa Smaily, Morocco
Smaili ranked third at the 800 meter race in Poland with a 1:46.70 minute finish. He has reserved a place at his first senior Olympics, as he placed fourth in the 2014 Youth Olympic Games.